It all started on Maidan square. In fall 2013, hundreds of thousands of Ukrainians took to the streets of Kyiv to topple the government and drive President Viktor Yanukovych from power.
Since then, many of the activists have returned to their old lives and careers. Others have taken the place of those they forced to step down. They all are facing the difficult task of rebuilding the new Ukraine, however, and addressing the war in the country’s east. Kyiv residents are taking a pragmatic approach, building hostels for volunteers who are back on leave in the capital after fighting in the east. Maidan Square is also being revived, with new bistros, bakeries and libraries. It’s an island of normalcy in a country that’s coping with upheaval and war.